Thursday, August 19, 2010

(unnofficial) Bits from ARM porters

Quite a few things have happened recently in the Debian/ARM land

ARM and Canonical have generously provided us with bunch of fast armel machines. Four of these are now as buildd's, bringing the total of armel buildd's to 7. In other words, armel should no longer lag behind other architectures when building unstable packages.

One of machines, has been setup as a porter box. It is faster (around 3x) than the older porterbox (agricola). All Debian Developers have access to the porterboxes.

The new buildds have allowed us to enable more suites. Thanks to Philipp Kerns work, armel builds now experimental, lenny-volatile, lenny-backports as well as unstable/non-free. Especially if you are using stable Debian, access to backports and volatile should make life happier :)

Finally, the next big thing is Hardfloat ARM port, effort being lead by Konstantinos Margaritis. This doesn't mean that the armel port is going away. Majority of ARM cpus sold are still without FPU, so the softloaf port (armel) will still have a long life ahead. Meanwhile, the armhf port will provide a more optimal platform for people with bleeding edge ARM cores (ARMv7 + vfp). Some people have been unhappy with the new proposed new port, and various alternatives have been proposed. However, armhf is currently the only solution being actively worked on.

Update: thank canonical too